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RNA Interference Therapy With ARC-520 Results in Prolonged Hepatitis B Surface Antigen Response in Patients With Chronic Hepatitis B Infection

 Man-Fung Yuen  ;  Ingolf Schiefke  ;  Jung-Hwan Yoon  ;  Sang Hoon Ahn  ;  Jeong Heo  ;  Ju Hyun Kim  ;  Henry Lik Yuen Chan  ;  Ki Tae Yoon  ;  Hartwig Klinker  ;  Michael Manns  ;  Joerg Petersen  ;  Thomas Schluep  ;  James Hamilton  ;  Bruce D Given  ;  Carlo Ferrari  ;  Ching-Lung Lai  ;  Stephen A Locarnini  ;  Robert G Gish 
 HEPATOLOGY, Vol.72(1) : 19-31, 2020-07 
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Background and aims: ARC-520, the first an RNA interference (RNAi) therapeutic, was designed to reduce all RNA transcripts derived from covalently closed circular DNA, leading to a reduction in viral antigens and hepatitis B virus (HBV) DNA. Approach and results: We aimed to evaluate the depth of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) decline in response to multiple doses of ARC-520 compared to placebo (PBO) in two randomized, multicenter studies in nucleoside/nucleotide analogue reverse-transcriptase inhibitor (NUC)-experienced patients with hepatitis B early antigen (HBeAg)-negative (E-neg) or HBeAg-positive (E-pos) disease. A total of 58 E-neg and 32 E-pos patients were enrolled and received four monthly doses of PBO (n = 20 E-neg, 11 E-pos), 1 mg/kg ARC-520 (n = 17 E-neg, 10 E-pos), or 2 mg/kg ARC-520 (n = 21 E-neg, 11 E-pos) concomitantly with NUC. HBsAg change from baseline to 30 days after the last ARC-520 dose were compared to PBO. Both E-neg and E-pos high-dose groups significantly reduced HBsAg compared to PBO, with mean reductions of 0.38 and 0.54 log IU/mL, respectively. HBsAg reductions persisted for approximately 85 days and >85 days after the last dose in E-neg and E-pos patients, respectively. The low-dose groups did not reach statistical significance in either study. E-pos patients showed a dose-dependent reduction in HBeAg from baseline. Mean maximum reduction was 0.23 and 0.69 log Paul Ehrlich IUs/mL in the low-dose and high dose ARC-520 groups respectively. ARC-520 was well tolerated, with only two serious adverse events of pyrexia possibly related to study drug observed. Conclusions: ARC-520 was active in both E-neg and E-pos, NUC-experienced HBV patients; but absolute HBsAg reductions were moderate, possibly due to expression of HBsAg from integrated HBV DNA, indicating the need for RNAi therapeutics that can target viral transcripts regardless of origin.
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1. College of Medicine (의과대학) > Dept. of Internal Medicine (내과학교실) > 1. Journal Papers
Yonsei Authors
Ahn, Sang Hoon(안상훈) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3629-4624
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